Grand Jury Report: Contra Costa Detention Facilities

The Contra Costa Grand Jury has issued a report (available here) on the County's adult and juvenile detention  facilities.

The Contra Costa Civil Grand Jury is required by California Penal Code 919(b) to conduct inspections of detention facilities in Contra Costa County (County).  In addition, California Penal Code Section 925 allows the Grand Jury to investigate the operations of the County’s juvenile holding and detention facilities, and the Probation Department.  The 2012-2013 Contra Costa Civil Grand Jury  inspected, received thorough tours of the facilities, and interviewed staff at the adult detention facilities in Martinez, West County and Marsh Creek and both juvenile facilities --  John A. Davis Juvenile Hall (Juvenile Hall) and Orin Allen Youth Rehabilitation Center (Boys’ Ranch).

The Grand Jury found the Contra Costa County detention facilities, both adult and juvenile, to be well-managed and well-maintained by staff who conducted themselves professionally and courteously.  There were, however, a number of issues of sufficient concern to warrant comment and recommendations for correction.

  • While it is too early to accurately predict the effect of AB 109, it is clear that realignment will place greater numbers of serious offenders in County facilities for longer periods of time.  The Grand Jury questions whether sufficient analysis has been done to gauge capacity in light of expected changes in inmate population.
  • Although not limited to detention facilities, the computer-based maintenance and repair Corrigo system installed by the County is not being utilized to its capabilities as a true management information system.
  • Renovation of the Martinez Detention Facility Intake Area (Martinez Intake Area) is proceeding much too slowly.  It is unreasonable to have taken such an extraordinary amount of time to correct an unsafe situation.  Policies and procedures need to be put in place expediently to avoid similar delays in the future.
  • The juvenile system lacks a modern case management system and seems unable to come to a conclusion on the design and implementation of one.  No legitimate reason for the delay was found.
  • The Contra Costa Community College District needs to respond with a greater sense of urgency to requests from the juvenile program staff for detainee access to District services and programs for the detainee population.

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